GERMANY > MOSEL
Riesling, Müller-Thurgau, Pinot Noir, Pinot blanc
Germany > Mosel
Growing & Buying grapes
Rob and Derek met in Barossa Valley Australia during harvest 2016 and immediately disliked each other. Forever in competition, when Derek purchased grapes to make his first wine, Robert found some for free. He then proceeded to give Derek a barrel.
Madame Flöck Wines was conceived over many drunken nights. Nobody knew where they would set up shop, but they were determined, as only two drunk kids at 3AM can be. On a harvest tour through Europe, Robert met his future wife, the winemaker Janina Schmitt in Winningen Mosel, and they fell madly in love and things got gooey really quick. Fast forward to a phone call: “Derek, you want to buy a vineyard” Robert was said to have asked, “Sure” was Derek’s response. “Okay.” Robert confirmed. And voilà Madame Flock Wines of the Mosel was born.
The name itself comes from the owner of their first Mosel vineyard. And before you ask, no she doesn’t look like the woman on the bottle label who may or may not be a 19th century London zombie brothel keeper. The real Madame Flöck got the boys started in the Mosel and to honor her, they named their wine after her. As much as they dislike each other though, they both love growing vines and making great wine together.
They work in the often-overlooked region of the Upper (Terrassen) Mosel, where time passed the vineyards by leaving them forlorn and forgotten. But not if Madame Flöck has anything to say about it! This is a special terroir, with some of the oldest (often ungrafted vines) in the world, but because of the steep terraces and inability to work with machines this area became largely unpopular towards the end of 20th century. The wines from this part of Mosel are normally more vertical and vibrant compared to their counterparts from Middle Mosel.
Derek and Robert essentially work in the vineyards around two towns – Lehmen and Winningen. Madame Flöck has two Lehmen vineyards adjacent to each other in the Ausinousstein subregion. They are 12 and 13 terraces tall respectively, where the soil consists primarily of blue and gray slate and with a pH that is a bit more basic and calcareous than that of Winningen. Madame Flock’s Mosel Lehmener Ausinousstein blocks are south to south-east facing and some of the wines are over 80 years old. The Winningen vineyard is west-facing, but inside a small valley and at the very top of the hill, which accounts for the wind that brings a good airflow and a slightly cooler climate that allows a longer ripening period without a strong threat of botrytis.
All Madame Flöck’s vineyards are dry-grown, herbicide-free, and hand-tended. This means no machinery ever touches the vineyards, no glyphosate messes with the natural biodiversity of the vineyards, and the team’s hands are blistered, backs broken, and wits lost by the time of harvest. But as the old Roman saying goes – “through hardship to the stars.”
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